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Sports play a huge role in the overall development of children and offer far more benefits than just improved physical fitness. Participating in sports from a young age helps children to build essential life skills, encourages social connection and nurtures self-confidence. There are many more other ways in which participation in sports can positively impact children, but it is important that parents, coaches and educators are also aware of how to help further nurture this development with practical strategies that build their confidence through sport.



  1. Skill development

Children acquire new skills and improve existing ones through regular training and practice. This will then lead to a greater sense of accomplishment which will be rewarding and encourage them to further push their skills. Whether it’s scoring a goal at football or perfecting a gymnastics routine, each achievement boosts a child’s confidence in their abilities which not only encourages them within their sport, but within their everyday lives too.


  1. Resilience and perseverance

It is only natural that children who participate in sports will learn to deal with challenges, setbacks and failures. Through this, they will discover the value of perseverance and resilience which will help them to tackle future challenges with confidence and existing knowledge. Furthermore, as they navigate through tough training, devastating losses and moments of frustration, they are overcoming obstacles which will only make them stronger in the future.


  1. Teamwork and learning to collaborate

Team sports provide children with opportunities to work with others toward common goals. Because of this, children learn to communicate more effectively, build trust in their teammates and contribute to the success of the group. This sense of feeling valued and supported within a team environment boosts their self-esteem and confidence.


  1. Self-expression and creativity

Sports offer a safe environment for children to explore self-expression and creativity, allowing children to showcase their unique talents and abilities. It may be that they choreograph a routine at dance or devise a new play on the pitch, but no matter what way they choose to express themselves, they will gain confidence in expressing themselves authentically and creatively.




  1. Practice positive reinforcement

Ensure that you encourage and praise children’s efforts, progress and achievements. Positive reinforcement builds their confidence and motivation to continue working hard and striving for their best. Whilst it is important to focus on both their strengths and areas of improvement, offering constructive feedback and support along the way rather than harsh criticism will help to nurture their motivation instead of making them want to give in.


  1. Set realistic goals together

It is important not to overwhelm children with goals that are essentially out of reach. Instead, you should set achievable goals together that challenge them to grow and improve without overwhelming them. Larger goals can be broken down into smaller, more manageable steps and then each smaller milestone achieved can be celebrated to maintain their motivation and sense of progress. This goal setting will help children to foster a sense of purpose and direction, empowering them to take ownership of their development and progress.


  1. Create a supportive environment

A positive and supportive atmosphere will make children feel safe, respected and valued. This will help you and the children to get the most out of their sporting activities which will boost their confidence and sense of belonging. Encourage open communication, teamwork and mutual support both in and out of their sports.


  1. Promote inclusivity and diversity

Children of all backgrounds abilities and skill levels should be welcomed into sports. Creating opportunities for children to interact with peers from diverse backgrounds shows the importance of acceptance and inclusion. This celebration of diversity improves children’s experience with sports and boosts children’s confidence in their unique identities and contributions.


  1. Focus on effort and improvement

Shift the focus from outcomes to effort and improvement. Celebrating effort and improvement, rather than just wins and losses will teach children the value of hard work, dedication and perseverance. By doing this, you will instil a growth mindset and resilience in children which boosts their confidence and self-esteem. Moreover, encourage them to set personal goals, challenge themselves and strive for continuous growth and development.


  1. Lead by example

Children will look up to their parents, coaches and educators therefore it is essential that they lead by example and demonstrate confidence, resilience and sportsmanship in their own behaviours.


Participating in sports provides children with several benefits, all of which extend beyond the field. These benefits contribute massively to a child’s sense of confidence and self-esteem which is a crucial aspect of their personal development.